The UAE Ministry of Education has confirmed that all private and public schools in the country will start their Summer break from July 2.
July 9 will be the last day at work for all teachers and all educational staff members, as previously announced.
The news comes after the nation's educational system transitioned to online learning, which includes the use of downloadable assignments and live broadcasts from teachers. The UAE's e-learning system has been in effect since March of this year, following the outbreak of the coronavirus.
It is still unclear as to whether the new school year, which starts in September, will operate online. However, government and school officials have suggested several different scenarios. These include conducting 70 percent of lessons at school, with 30 percent to be potentially conducted at home.
To date, the Ministry of Education has announced that any decision on the physical reopening of schools, would depend on the virus situation in the coming months.
The announcement comes shortly after UAE officials announced a change in lockdown timings, following the continuation of the country's National Sterilisation Programme.
As of Wednesday, May 20, the UAE has been subject to a strict curfew from 8 pm to 6 am.
التغطية المباشرة للإحاطة الإعلامية لحكومة الإمارات حول مستجدات الوضع الصحي والحالات المرتبطة بمرض #كوفيد19
— UAEGov (@uaegov) May 18, 2020
New, heavier fines have also been introduced, in an attempt to reduce the risk and spread of COVID-19. These include greater fines for those who fail to wear protective face masks and for those who fail to maintain a strict social distance of two meters.
— WAM English (@WAMNEWS_ENG) May 18, 2020
The full list of new COVID-19 fines are as follow:
- AED50,000 fine for those who fail to home quarantine, as well as for those who do not repeatCOVID-19 tests as required
- AED50,000 fine for educational institutions, cinemas, gyms, open-air stores, parks, beaches, pools, supermarkets who fail to adhere to coronavirus safety measures
- AED50,000 fine for those who fail to home quarantine
- AED30,000 fine for those holding private classes
- AED20,000 fine for those publishing private patient information
- AED20,000 fine for establishments not operating thermal screening cameras where required
- AED20,000 fine for those caught attempting to hack the ALHOSN UAE app
- AED10,000 fine for those who have not downloaded the ALHOSN UAE app
- AED10,000 fine for organizers hosting gatherings
- AED5,000 fine for those caught attending gatherings
- AED5,000 fine for employers and employees of companies not adhering to the mandatory wearing of face masks
- AED3,000 fine for those caught not wearing a protective face mask when out in public and while driving, or while using public and private transport.
- AED3,000 fine for those caught traveling in a vehicle with more than three people
- AED3,000 fine for caught moving between emirates, during the hours of the National Sterilisation Programme
- AED3,000 fine for caught not following social distancing measures
- AED3,000 fine for those who fail to wear protective face masks
- AED10,000, as well as a potential six-month prison sentence for repeat offenders.
The initiative forms part of the nation's attempts to reduce the risk and spread of the COVID-19 virus in the UAE.
Several other COVID-19 health and safety measurements in the UAE include:
The Roads and Transport Authority of Dubai introduced two new rules for all Dubai Tram and Dubai Metro users. According to the new RTA guidelines, elevators located within the Dubai Metro and the Dubai Tram are only to be used by people of determination and parents with prams. No more than two people are allowed to use the service at a time.
The new guidelines aim to help reduce the risk and spread of COVID-19 in the emirate.
Previously, the RTA announced that all public transport users have to wear face masks and maintain a strict social distance of two meters at all times. Gloves, however, are not compulsory, but hand sanitizers are to be carried at all times.
As fewer people are allowed to travel on the Dubai Metro and the Dubai Tram at one time, the RTA advised all passengers to arrive 30 minutes before they intended to board the Dubai Tram or Metro.
The Supreme Committee of Crisis and Disaster Management in Dubai announced that all public parks will now be open to the public. Provided face masks are worn, strict social distancing is maintained, and that gatherings consist of no more than five people. Those looking to workout outside can now exercise in groups of five, again, provided that strict social distancing is maintained that face masks are worn at all times.
Earlier this month, government officials released an official circular highlighting the reopening protocols of malls and office spaces in Dubai, once Ramadan comes to an end. Once the Holy Month concludes, malls within the emirate that is home to the likes of The Dubai Mall, Mall of will continue to operate with reduced staff numbers. Operating hours will be from 10 am to 10 pm, while stores will continue to operate at 30 percent of their capacity in terms of staff and customer numbers. Seventy-five percent of mall parking will remain closed, while the use of elevators is only authorized for people of determination. Children under the age of 12 and those aged above 60 will continue to be restricted from entering shopping malls, supermarkets, and local convince stores.
Once Ramadan concludes, all offices will continue to function at a 30 percent capacity once Ramadan comes to an end. Kitchens and pantries will be allowed to open, provided that strict social distancing is practiced, and disposable cutlery is used. The use of water dispensers, however, will not be allowed. All employees and visitors are required to wear face masks at all times, while hand sanitizers are to be installed at all common communal key points such as office entrances and pantries. A strict social distance of two meters is to be maintained at all times, and office meetings should have no more than five attendees, and a minimum social distance of two meters is be maintained at all times.
For more COVID-19 news and updates in the UAE, please click here.